Relationships are essential to our life - friendships, an intimate partner, professional connections, membership of an organisation, how we relate to God - the list is endless. Yet relationships can also be so painful that we draw back into isolation to prevent further hurt. Then, after a time, the loneliness, silence, impoverishment can put pressure on us from within, so that we are compelled to reach out again - perhaps tentatively, maybe crashing blindly back in the deep end, or maybe with a veneer or a mask to hide behind. These ebb and flow patterns can take years to go around, or ripple through in minutes, but the key question is: are they producing growth and development or are they compounding an ingrained destructive downward cycle? In the process of conscious embodiment, we will hit the wall that we built up to safeguard us from pain in relationships. The key to finding the way back into relationship is in having the courage to open your heart to the truth. This time it must be in a safe atmosphere, with safe connections. Here are some steps to help you find the way back........ First, remove yourself as far as possible from people who are unsafe to be around - people with repeated or extreme patterns of not keeping appointments or agreements with you, not respecting your personal space or belongings, making remarks that put you down. Secondly, rest in this space and release the backlog of tears, anger, toxicity, exhaustion and mental chatter. Thirdly, begin the process of reconnection apart from people, through the natural world - landscapes, parks and gardens, sunsets, the sea, rivers, woodlands, birds, insects, pets, wild animals. Fourthly, appreciate the creative power that brought all this into being and is sustaining it. Open your heart to this truth and seek a deeper understanding of your part in this whole creation. Finally, when you feel sufficiently restored and connected, begin reconnecting with people again but this time with the wisdom to know that none of them are perfect. Just like you, they have insecurities, past wounds, limited understanding in any situation and limited abilities in some way or another. This time, finding your way back into relationship will involve letting go of your charged emotions before you face the other person, seeking to understand their heart before you reveal your own, being safe because you will only connect with others in mutual respect, being fulfilled because you seek to build up, not tear down, the precious relationships around you.
For help in processing your past and restoring relational depth and health, book an appointment for therapy by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Corrina Kennedy, Peterborough, Cambridgeshire, UK